Some nice success today with the Princess Wand toy pictured below. It is a plastic toy that vibrates and has flashing lights. A two year old with CP was able to put rings over the top (as I had been doing with the other kids all morning) then he wrapped both hands around it in front of the anticast handle to stabilize himself and his posture was perfect for a good lap. The only problem was that it was exhausting for me to keep it in position- he was pulling so hard on it. Grasping a ball has worked well to help him stabilize his shoulders and trunk in the same way. But opening his hands to grasp this toy seemed to break the extensor tone even more.
I started teaching a few kids that they can get more rings to place over the wand by pulling reins/stopping next to them on the trail so that I could get them for them. ( I attached a couple of rings on back of a paddock wall). I think this will be a very motivational method to encourage rein use.
The "rings" are cut out of laundry bottles, but I like them more than real rings since they are flimsy and take two hands to use.
Barbara Smith, M.S., OTR/L author of, The Recycling Occupational Therapist